13 Video Trends We're Super Excited About for 2019

We may not have a crystal ball, but we sure are excited about the future of video.

Jenny Coppola


Ah, 2018 — “The Year of Video.” Here at Wistia, every year is the year of video, but that should (hopefully) come as no surprise! In all seriousness, we’ve seen a huge uptick in the adoption of video by marketers and salespeople alike this year, and we couldn’t be more excited about it. Better yet, there’s been an explosion of creativity in the business video world as of late, and we’re chomping at the bit to see what happens next!

That’s why we thought it would be fun to look deep into our metaphorical crystal ball at the emerging trends in video we think are sure to dominate the scene in 2019. So, get that space suit out of your closet, ’cause we’re about to blast into the future!

1. Spontaneous stories

You can find these casual little darlings on social media, in formats like Instagram Stories, Snapchat, or even in tweet threads. These bite-sized videos, produced on the fly and delivered incrementally, keep viewers hooked and help start conversations in real time.

Spontaneous stories are great for drumming up hype around a product (especially e-commerce items that are new to the market) or breaking down educational topics related to your brand.

Parks Project uses Instagram Stories to share updates on volunteer and fundraising efforts in short videos and slides. These short and sweet videos make it easy for Parks Project’s current and future customers to watch the company’s mission in action. We think that in-the-moment content will become more and more prominent as mobile video becomes the norm, so start warming up those thumbs!

2. Accessible video

As video becomes more and more popular, marketers will need to master video accessibility. In fact, captioning and auto-describing video is required by law for many businesses. We’re jazzed about this trend not only because it’s one step toward making videos inclusive to all, but also because better captioning means meeting your audience’s needs where ever they are.

Take a look at how built-in captions make these support videos from SeatGeek more informative right from the start!

Captions also make your video content easier for Google to crawl, which can help with video SEO — big win for 2019!

3. Video thought leadership

First-person storytelling is one of the most effective ways to communicate a message, so it pairs well with the most emotional medium out there — video! A video of someone talking directly into the camera is extremely captivating (and also super easy to create), which is why we think this will be a big trend for marketers and salespeople in 2019.

“First-person storytelling is one of the most effective ways to communicate a message, so it pairs well with the most emotional medium out there — video!”

We’re looking forward to more employees getting out from behind their desks (or heck, even staying seated!) and in front of the camera to share their expertise. Take this video from Buffer’s Brian Petters, for instance. In it, he talks straight into the camera about a day in the life of a social media manager. He uses a few visual props to bolster his points, but he’s mostly just talking about topics he knows well!

This type of thought leadership content is easy to digest and learn from. We think everyone could benefit from creating and watching more of these types of videos.

4. Live Q&As and AMAs

Ever since Reddit popularized the “Ask Me Anything” format, online Q&As have brought people together to geek out on topics they care about. A candid Q&A helps people get to know industry experts and CEOs better, while allowing the featured speaker to answer burning questions all in one place.

Enter the era of the coveted livestream. Video Q&As can be done on any number of platforms, including Twitch, Periscope, Facebook Live, Instagram Live, Crowdcast, and more! We recently held a Q&A here at Wistia after launching our first-ever video series, One, Ten, One Hundred. This 50-minute session allowed for real-time engagement with viewers, and the series' creators, Chris and Dan, were able to answer all questions right on the spot.

Here’s a still from our recent in-depth Q&A.

We think marketers will start doing more live streams to help give their projects more legs. A recorded live stream will stay relevant for days, weeks, or even months after the initial Q&A. Plus, you can reuse a live stream as a resource on your website, or continue to share it on social media, introducing the session to new audiences as you go along!

5. Podcast tapings

Why only create one asset when you can make two at the same time? In 2018, tons of individuals, brands, and media companies dove into podcasting. In 2019, we’re looking forward to more podcast videos. A video of a podcast helps viewers get to know the hosts and guests even better. When done at a business, it can offer exposure and insight into your company culture and lets your employees shine.

Drift releases videos of their “Seeking Wisdom” podcast on the company’s YouTube channel. The video version shows behind-the-scenes action, facial expressions, and reactions that you don’t get in the audio version.

There’s more than one way to make your podcast interactive. For instance, the hosts of the popular Hello Internet show make stop-motion animated videos to accompany each podcast. We’re excited to see where podcasts go next and believe that their partnership with video will continue to help them grow along the way!

6. 1:1 Video

Here at Wistia, we’re big fans of a more personal sales experience. Creating a 1:1 video is a quick way to check in with customers or leads and make sure your message gets heard. After all, watching a video is more engaging than reading through a whitepaper, slideshow, or lengthy email, and viewers retain more information this way, too.

“Creating a 1:1 video is a quick way to check in with customers or leads and make sure your message gets heard.”

Nextep, a human reources software service, has transformed their sales process by using personalized, 1:1 videos. Check it out!

With tons of mobile editing apps and tools like our very own free webcam and screen-recording tool, Soapbox, it’s easier than ever to make a video on your own. We think we’ll see a lot more sales teams using video in their outreach next year to build stronger relationships (and close more deals). Here’s to a super successful 2019!

The video recording power of Soapbox is now available natively in Wistia. Learn more.

7. Virtual presentations

Conferences are a blast because they gather like-minded people with great ideas in one place. Virtual conferences do the same thing, but with a global online community. We’re excited to see more companies bring people together with online conferences and presentations in 2019.

We held our first virtual conference this year, CouchCon, after we ended our annual “in-person” conference, WistiaFest.

We shared talks from thirteen speakers who presented on all aspects of video marketing, from conversion rate optimization, to lead nurturing, to social media strategy. People watched from all over the world, and the responses were super positive! Hosting a virtual conference by creating video presentations can easily help you expand your brand’s reach. Plus, you can collect leads when asking viewers to sign up for the exclusive content. It’s a win-win for all!

8. Mobile-first video

In 2017, the number of mobile video views surpassed desktop. It might not feel all that surprising considering how much time we spend on our phones, but that’s still a pretty staggering stat! With more and more people watching content on narrow, vertical screens, square and portrait oriented videos are on the rise. This trend is so exciting because it brings on a whole new set of creative challenges and possibilities!

“With more and more people watching content on narrow, vertical screens, square and portrait oriented videos are on the rise.”

Mobile marketing gives us the chance to connect with people on a more casual, intimate level. Since we use our phones to connect with friends and family, brands will start to consider that more heavily when it comes to the way they approach their customers.

9. Video in email

Video and email are the perfect pair — like PB&J, salt and pepper, green eggs and ham — you get the gist. Everyone reads emails, but with tons of emails pouring into your inbox throughout the day, a video can help marketers stand out amongst the crowd. Putting “Video” in your subject line can lead to higher open rates, and video thumbnails will lead to more clicks than plain links!

Plus, using video gives you the chance to add some personality to your sales and marketing emails. At Sahouri, employees add a video to their signature, so it’s easy for clients to put faces to names.

We think this trend will continue to gain traction in 2019, as more and more people start to see success when including video in their email communication.

10. Paid video courses

We’re all about sharing ungated content here at Wistia — it’s a great awareness tool for the top of the funnel. However, if you’ve spent a few years building up a captive audience, you might want to consider gating or charging for some of your educational content. Doing so can help you easily measure exactly how your marketing efforts are impacting revenue, and will also help you come up with new ideas for valuable content!

Minimalist Baker, a food blogging site, leveraged their existing social media audience to create a paid video series called Food Video School. Give it a looksie!

Creating a course will not only provide a valuable resource to customers, but it also becomes an opportunity for different creators to partner together. We love this idea and hope to see more of it in 2019!

11. Transparency with video

Marketing involves so much testing and tinkering, it’s easy to feel like you’re just not doing it right. We think that behind-the-scenes videos about how people actually build and grow their businesses (showcasing both successes and failures) are the next step for businesses big and small.

We’ve always believed that being transparent about what we’ve learned over the years here at Wistia is one of the best ways to teach our audience and help them grow. We think that businesses will start being more transparent with their decision-making process, will share more about what’s worked for them, and what hasn’t, and we think they’ll communicate that message with video.

“We think that businesses will start being more transparent with their decision-making process and that they’ll communicate that message with video.”
There they are! That’s Chris and Brendan.

We recently just shared the story behind why our cofounders decided to take on $17M in debt in order to grow our own way. Since video is such an authentic and personal medium, we incorporated both an intro video and a Q&A within the post for the most context. Video is the perfect delivery tool for communication. Start making your own list of marketing and sales tactics that worked (or didn’t) for you this year, and get ready to share ’em next year!

12. Splitting the screen

As more and more teams go remote, collaboration via video will start to become the norm. Recordings of video chats and screenshares are a great way to share knowledge in your team or even give the rest of the world an inside look at your process.

A great example of this is the New York Times' series on pop music production in 2018. Their video on “The Middle” shows a series of interviews and songwriting sessions conducted over FaceTime — super cool.

Recording your conversations or presentations makes it easy to go back and review what was said, and pass on learnings at scale. The internal and external potential for this medium is endless!

13. Recurring video series

We’re probably most excited about video marketers taking big creative risks in 2019. This includes long-form series where brands and artists work together to dive deeply into relevant and interesting topics for a wide audience.

This was our goal with creating One, Ten, One Hundred, a series that aimed to uncover how money can actually impact creativity.

Other companies are starting to bet big on video series, too. ProfitWell compares the pricing strategies of major consumer brands on Pricing Page Teardown. Intercom made a series of documentaries about Inside Intercom, their world tour of conferences. Making a high-quality video series gives marketers a chance to slow down, explore big questions, chase their passions, and say something meaningful about the work they do. We can’t wait to see what brands do with this concept!

“Making a high-quality video series gives marketers a chance to slow down, explore big questions, chase their passions, and say something meaningful about the work they do.”

What we’re most excited about

We’re most excited that there’s going to be more video, everywhere. If video trends continue to follow their current trajectories, there will be a record amount of video watched in 2019. In this brave new world, anything is possible, and we know marketers and salespeple are going to step up to the plate. So, go forth, make amazing videos, and be sure to share your creations with us!

Jenny Coppola


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